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Sir James Edward Edmonds

(1861—1956) military historian


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(1861–1956). Commissioned into the Royal Engineers in 1881, Edmonds served on Kitchener's staff in South Africa. He went to France in 1914 as COS of 4th Division. After wilting under the strain, he spent the rest of the war on the staff of the chief engineer in France. Edmonds was far more important after the war than during it. Director of the military branch of the historical section of the Committee of Imperial Defence, he edited several volumes of the official history. Superficially he tended towards the view that external factors—new technologies, inexperienced commanders, staff and troops, political interference, and German fighting qualities—accounted for patchy British performance, and believed that his task was to describe rather than criticize.

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From The Oxford Companion to Military History in Oxford Reference.

Subjects: Military History.


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